Skip to main content

Paying it forward


A couple of years ago, I lost my mobile phone. It didn’t cause a panic, mostly because I wasn’t aware I had lost it until the person who found it let me know. I had been on my way to work and the phone had dropped from my bag as I made a mad dash across the street before the lights turned red.

A young woman heading in the opposite direction at the same time found the phone. A resourceful person, she immediately checked the phone's address book, found the number for my mother and gave her a ring. My mother told her where to reach me at work and the young woman did. It all happened so fast that she had called my work before I got there.

I was very grateful for her, especially once it dawned on me how difficult my life might have got if I’d had to try and locate the phone myself or if I'd lost if for good. She got a little present as a thank you, and I got a lesson in how not to store my phone and what to do if I ever find a phone myself.

Yesterday, I found someone’s mobile. There it was, lying on a strip of grass between the street and the pavement. I paused and picked it up and immediately wished I hadn’t. But once seen, it couldn’t be unseen. I looked around for anyone nearby who might act like they had just lost something, but I was alone.

There I stood, holding the stupid mobile, wondering what I should do. Should I just put in on the balustrade of a nearby building so that it could be seen from afar? I immediately discarded that idea. Should I take it to the lost and found? But it was Friday evening; it wouldn’t be open. So should I try and locate the owner myself?

I remembered then the handy way the young woman had located me when I lost my phone. But, alas, this option wasn't available for me. The phone was dead. So, despite the hour, I decided to head to the nearby police station after all. I had this notion that they would have a box there where people could leave the items they have found after office hours. 

Turned out, they didn’t. And there wasn’t a helpful police officer in sight either.

Again I stood there, holding the phone, wondering what I should do. I didn’t feel like keeping someone’s property over the weekend so that I could come back on Monday, during the office hours. In the end, I just put it in the station’s post box. They’ll either do something about the phone or they don’t, but at least it’s out of my hands.

It wasn’t until I returned home and told my husband about the incident that he pointed out that it might not have been such a smart move after all. “I bet it puts the whole place on high alert to find a phone in their post box.”

So, my chance to pay forward a good deed done to me didn’t exactly go well. But I’m not discouraged. Next time I find something, things might go differently. And if I’m lucky, the police won’t find out it was me who put the phone in the post box.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Reading resolutions (and resolute reading)

It’s a new year and time for a new reading challenge. I’ve participated in the challenge on Goodreads for four years in a row now, and each year I’ve added to the number of books I’ve read. Last year I read sixty books, though I’d originally pledged to read fifty-five. To be on the safe side, I kept it to fifty-five this year too. I usually pick my reading based on how I feel, and it seems I’ve felt like reading quite a lot of urban fantasy and fantasy last year. You can check out here what I read last year.
This year, I decided to be more organised about my reading. So I made a list. I never make them, or if I do I don’t follow them, but a list of books to read has to be easy to stick to. Especially since I didn’t make any difficult promises, like reading classics in their original language.


My list has fifty-six books at the moment, so there’s some room for changes. And it seems I’ll be reading a lot of urban fantasy (27) and fantasy (22) this year too, and quite a lot of it from auth…

Temporality and passage of time in serial fiction

I’ve been binge watching Star Trek: Enterprise lately. I didn’t see it when it aired in 2001-2005, but thanks to the streaming services, I’ve been able to indulge. For those who aren’t familiar with the series, it’s set a hundred years before the adventures of the original series with Captain Kirk and his fellows, and follows the crew of the first starship Enterprise. I’ve always been a Star Trek fan and I’ve liked it in all its incarnations, but Enterprise might be my favourite. There are many reasons for my preference, but what sets it apart from other series is how it allows the passage of time to show.

Many episodic TV series, regardless of the genre, are curiously atemporal. Passage of time is only implied to, maybe with the compulsory Halloween, Christmas, and Valentine’s Day episodes, or if the series is set in the school world, with the start and end of the term; if it’s a long-running series, the students move from one grade to the next from season to season. Other than that, …

Reading recap: March

I had a good reading month last month. Everything I read was delightful and entertaining, on top of which they were good books too. Again, I didn’t quite stick to my reading list; two out of five books were outside it.
First up was A Gathering of Shadows by V. E. Schwab. It’s the second book in her Shades of Magic trilogy set in a world of parallel Londons that have different levels of magic and which can be travelled between by a special person with enough magic and right words. Grey London is in the Regency England of the ‘real’ world with little or no magic, Red London is abundant with magic, and White London is in permanent winter and constantly struggles to regain its magic by any means necessary. In the first book, Lila gets accidentally drawn from Grey to Red London by Kell who can travel between the worlds, and decides to stay. In this second book, she enters the stage as a pirate and ends up taking part in a tournament of magic. Most of the book is taken by the tournament, and…